Let’s not play Russian roulette
As a primary care physician, I am writing in support of our governor, Janet Mills, and Maine CDC Director Dr. Nirav Shah. Mills and Shah are doing exactly the right things to protect Mainers by extending the stay at home mandate and allowing phased in business openings.
Our lives are too precious to play Russian roulette! Stay safe!
Caveats and considerations
Regarding the quarantine, let us remove it, with an understanding that businesses, their staff and clients, incorporate protocols that we know mitigate spread of the virus.
In the U.S., we govern ourselves. With guidance from fellow citizens, whom we have elected to assist us, and those who have studied COVID-19, we are certainly capable of applying our ingenuity toward alterations that allow us to work and make a living.
I would also suggest reviewing the benefits of our current situation. Using the information gleaned, we can modify work and lifestyle behaviors to further enhance the well-being of ourselves, our fellow inhabitants and our planet.
Compared to SARS and MERS, with 10 percent and 34 percent rates of mortality, with respect to those who have lost loved-ones, we are getting off easy. While systems facilitate our survival, we have witnessed among the empty shelves that they can also break down or exclude.
It is not the job, or ability, of our elected officials to care for capable citizens. Our grandparents often kept on hand extra food, water, funds and staples. Whether it be an illness in the family or the next world-wide pandemic, we are wise to do the same.
A delicious meal despite COVID-19
I want to extend a grateful thank you to Melissa Kelly, chef of Primo of Rockland, and her staff for cooking, packing and delivering the annual Easter dinner that Adas Yoshuron Synagogue sponsors and serves at St. Peter’s Church.
We usually serve a sit down dinner, but due to COVID-19 we served a ham dinner take-out style with mashed potatoes, gravy, roasted vegetables and brownies. Thanks also to Hannaford and Shaw’s for donating the hams and gift cards to buy the vegetables and potatoes.
In spite of COVID-19, thanks to them, we were able to serve a delicious meal.
Linda Garson Smith
Adas Yoshuron Synagogue
Getting back to work safely
There are a lot of very smart folks working on protecting us here in Maine from COVID-19 and we should thank them. Reading the April 30 editorial made me realize just how far off track we’ve gone, with Maine CDC Director Dr. Nirav Shah getting the media to follow them.
Shah “warned repeatedly” that Maine has tested a “tiny fraction” of our population. Agreed, but what does that tell us? If we test half the population and the number of infected goes from 1,000 to 100,000 are we any sicker? Are more people going to the hospital or going to die?
Absolutely not; it would likely be great news at this point. Active cases of sick folks, not total cases, is the number to watch and they are decreasing. Every day we see more masks, there is more sanitizer available and more large events are canceled, even through late summer. We are continuing to do more to prevent infection when the rates are already dropping.
In a month we’ve gone from panicking about ventilators to having plenty, and with some promising brand new treatments there will very likely be fewer needed. Folks, everything in life is about “rate” — how quickly or slowly events occur. If we don’t start very soon to get back to work safely and still understanding the dangers of this virus, our “rate” of bankruptcies will be much more devastating than this virus and the recovery won’t be nearly as fast.
Please give what you can
When I heard of the stay-at-home order, I was sitting comfortably in my recliner with my black Lab Gracie at my side. I am lucky to have a home, but I am worried for those who don’t. How must it feel to be encouraged to stay healthy at home when a home is exactly what is missing?
Luckily, there are people in our community dedicated to providing shelter and services to the homeless. For the past several years I have volunteered at the Bangor Area Homeless Shelter and the Brick Church. My favorite thing to do is to sit down at the tables and get to know the people. I always come away with more than I bring. How can you sit at a table with a man whose life was turned upside down by blindness and depression, and not be changed by his positive message of hope and perseverance?
I have also been inspired by the services given by Boyd Kronholm and his staff. Unfortunately, the Hike for the Homeless, which is a major source of financial support, has been postponed. It will happen but we are not sure when. The Brick Church continues to provide meals prepared by Bill Rae, which are being delivered outside.
As one of privilege who has been listening to heartfelt stories, I feel moved to ask those with a roof over their head to give whatever they can to the Bangor Area Homeless Shelter or the Brick Church in these difficult times when the homeless are at a high risk.
Make a difference on July 14
Due to the coronavirus, many details concerning this year’s 2020 primary election have yet to be determined. What we do know is that the election date has been set as July 14.
On that day, we will be given a choice of candidates for nomination, enhanced by this state’s decision to implement ranked-choice voting. Voting is your privilege to support the person who will carry your hopes, ideals and values to the general election in November. In my opinion, this is where we have the greatest grassroots influence in choosing those who represent us in Washington.
Because of the coronavirus threat, absentee voting is expected to be high so if you opt to vote absentee, contact your municipal office soon.
Please don’t miss your chance to make a difference. Vote on July 14!